Tofu Takes Time

Beaming. Apr. 2022. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781506480350.
PreS-Gr 1–In this child-friendly, intergenerational story, Lin and NaiNai carefully execute each step necessary for making tofu. “Tofu takes time” is the refrain, but in addition to teaching patience, the grandmother imparts a wealth of knowledge about the source of each ingredient in the wider world. Water, sunlight, metal, fabric and wood all play significant roles in the production of a delicious essential food. Wu incorporates sound words throughout such as “Click, Click, Whirrrr,” “Bubble, Bobble, Popple,” and “Fizzle, Sizzle, Hiss.” These are a delight to the ear and make this book one that promises successful read-alouds. The playful tone works in beautiful partnership with Jarema’s joyful illustrations as granddaughter and grandmother work together. Back matter provides information on the history of tofu and explains its recent popularity. While the author’s personal tofu experience relates to her own Chinese traditions, she also references tofu practices from other Asian countries.
VERDICT A standout story about a healthy food that some readers will embrace as a reflection of their own culture or diet and others will be inspired to try making.

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